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chawk610
05-14-2011, 01:30 PM
hey yall... '83 S&S. I picked up my new alternator yesterday. The guy at the alt shop said i just need to connect the pos / neg and good to go. did that... nothing. I checked the ignition and I have spark. BUT my old alt had another wire... the pic below shows the wire that it plugged into. do i need to run this to the pos. on the alt?

Covi
05-14-2011, 02:58 PM
hey yall... '83 S&S. I picked up my new alternator yesterday. The guy at the alt shop said i just need to connect the pos / neg and good to go. did that... nothing. I checked the ignition and I have spark. BUT my old alt had another wire... the pic below shows the wire that it plugged into. do i need to run this to the pos. on the alt?

Chawk,

I can't wait to hear what people have to say about that wire. I had a new alt. put in last summer and when I was looking over the work and wiring I noticed I have the same wire not going anywhere but stashed down by the alt. I think the mechanic thought I would never notice. Guess what, I did! My boat runs great and alt seems to be doing it's job without it. But so curious on what it is?

chawk610
05-14-2011, 03:03 PM
yea.. the guy said it wouldn't be used... weird because I have spark... and it is getting fuel... I am perplexed as to why it won't fire.

Covi
05-14-2011, 03:09 PM
That is strange?

chawk610
05-14-2011, 04:43 PM
I am ondering if there is a grounding issue? It died on the water last week and hasn't started since.

Table Rocker
05-14-2011, 04:59 PM
How did you test to see that you were getting spark? Do you have a points or electronic distributor?

chawk610
05-14-2011, 05:48 PM
took the ignition wire off the dist. cap... it sparked.

Table Rocker
05-14-2011, 06:22 PM
The coil wire was firing at the distributor cap? Was it a healthy "Pop, Pop, Pop" arc or a small spark? You might pull a plug, lay it on the block with the wire connected and see if it is firing well.

03geetee
05-14-2011, 07:11 PM
Doesnt that green wire go to the voltage regulator?

Just curious.

JTR

chawk610
05-14-2011, 07:31 PM
yes... with an exterior volt reg alt... this is a newer one that is built in. I had it started a few ago... then died again. So after scratching my head a bit I decided to pull the ignition wire... no spark. I had spark earlier.

chawk610
05-14-2011, 07:32 PM
The coil wire was firing at the distributor cap? Was it a healthy "Pop, Pop, Pop" arc or a small spark? You might pull a plug, lay it on the block with the wire connected and see if it is firing well.

plugs fouled maybe??? I will pull one now...

chawk610
05-14-2011, 07:32 PM
it was a pretty healthy spark... but not pop, pop, pop

Table Rocker
05-14-2011, 07:47 PM
plugs fouled maybe??? I will pull one now...
No, just wondering if you were getting fire in the hole. If the plugs are firing with good sparks and you haven't messed with the timing you start scratching your head.

Do you have a points ignition? I suspect points problems.

If you have anything exotic, I would also unhook any extra gear (stereo, dual batteries, etc.) from the electrical system. You want to eliminate any possible voltage drains.

chawk610
05-14-2011, 07:56 PM
ok...weak spark off the coil. points? not sure... I am pretty ignorant. I will say that I replaced the dist. cap and the the rotor... it ran great right after I did that.. then died on the lake. hasn't started untill earlier today. ran great for about 5 min. then died.

chawk610
05-14-2011, 07:57 PM
I will say the spark I had earlier was 2 or 3 times stronger than now...

thatsmrmastercraft
05-14-2011, 08:01 PM
Have you removed and cleaned the battery connections lately? A majority of electrical problems can be resolved with good battery connections.

chawk610
05-14-2011, 08:07 PM
I didn't replace the points when I replaced the dist. cap and rotor...

Table Rocker
05-14-2011, 08:08 PM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bl0Z6kbyI0c&feature=relmfu

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e66tA43wsNo

You will need a 12V test light.

chawk610
05-14-2011, 08:08 PM
Have you removed and cleaned the battery connections lately? A majority of electrical problems can be resolved with good battery connections.

Actuall I pulled the ground off the motor and cleaned it... I have a feeling I caused this by not replacing the points. I am dummy... not even sure where they are.

chawk610
05-14-2011, 08:17 PM
ok... must watched a video on replacing points.. mine doesn't have them in the cap. I have a little box in there with the mallory logo on it...

thatsmrmastercraft
05-14-2011, 08:46 PM
ok... must watched a video on replacing points.. mine doesn't have them in the cap. I have a little box in there with the mallory logo on it...

That Mallory box is in place of the points and is the electronic conversion.

chawk610
05-14-2011, 08:53 PM
yes sir... I reckon it is... but I am still not getting spark off the coil...

Table Rocker
05-14-2011, 09:00 PM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bl0Z6kbyI0c&feature=relmfu

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e66tA43wsNo

Were you able to do these?

chawk610
05-14-2011, 09:05 PM
I am about to go get a test light... got the kids this weekend... lol. they slow things down a bit.

chawk610
05-15-2011, 11:28 AM
Chawk,

I can't wait to hear what people have to say about that wire. I had a new alt. put in last summer and when I was looking over the work and wiring I noticed I have the same wire not going anywhere but stashed down by the alt. I think the mechanic thought I would never notice. Guess what, I did! My boat runs great and alt seems to be doing it's job without it. But so curious on what it is?

ovi... was there some kind of conversion kit the mechanic added with the new alt?

Table Rocker
05-15-2011, 11:45 AM
This explains the alternator wires.

http://www.alternatorparts.com/what_is_a_self_exciting_alternator.htm

Covi
05-15-2011, 11:54 AM
Ok here we go. Chawk610 my boat was down for 7 week last summer. I had my mechanic who I use all the time install what I thought would be a simple electronic ignition. Well it turned out to be that plus. He claimed he was running into (gremlins?) whatever. He said that something with the electrical system. I've know this guy for 25 + years and trusted him. Well here is the list
electronic ignition conversion
carb renew kit
water pump Imp. kit
fuel filter
Ap 25 platinum spark plugs
dist cap
alternator
sparg plug wire set
repair electrical conections in main harness.
claimed that main harness under dash was also getting hot.

Well it's safe to say after all of this the boat is running great. However is it all true, will I use him again? NO. 7 weeks and 1800.00 dollars later. Nope. No chance.

Again I brought it in for a simple conversion kit. :(

I now have wires dead ended. What's up with that. If I wanted to work on the engine myself now I don't even know where to begin. It's a bummer..

chawk610
05-15-2011, 03:36 PM
WOW... yea, trying to avoid dragging it in. I feel like I can figure this out for sure.

thatsmrmastercraft
05-15-2011, 03:46 PM
I read through this post again to try to get a better sense of what has happened. Am I correct that you installed the new alternator (and no, you don't need that wire for the new alt. with the integral voltage regulator) and then the next time you took the boat out it died and won't restart? If that is the case, I would take a careful look at everything you did with the alternator install because likely you disconnected something and didn't properly reconnect it.

chawk610
05-15-2011, 04:23 PM
close. We went out last wekend with the old alternator... it died on the water... I realized before it died that the amp gauge read 0 charge. I got a new alt on Friday and installed it. It sarted and ran for about 10 min. then died. While it was running the amp gauge was not consistant. it fluxuated. I saw on discount marine supply that they sell a conversion kit for upgrading to a newr style alt. Wondering if that is the prob.

chawk610
05-15-2011, 04:25 PM
http://www.skidim.com/prodinfo.asp?number=RK173070

lookie

chawk610
05-15-2011, 06:03 PM
anyone heard of this before??

chawk610
05-22-2011, 05:38 PM
LOOOOONG story short!!!!! My dad came over and elped with the boat. He found that my tachometer has a short in it... well... it is grounded to the coil...causing the intermintent spark. Removed the ground and it starts and runs like a champ. I will replace the tach when I can afford too... but for now we are back in business!!!


Thank yal for the help..

AND, no conversion kit needed, just in case anyone else was wondering.

Table Rocker
05-22-2011, 07:43 PM
Good job! I figured you had to have a short in the wiring somewhere, but I would have never guessed it was a bad tach.

chawk610
05-22-2011, 08:47 PM
I know... right. The bummer is we couldn't go out today... super windy and storms brewing... so we washed and waxed the old girl. She looks great (sitting in the garage) :(